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Poster: stratocaster Date: Jun 23, 2009 7:48pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

1972

what? 1972?

why?

Consistency, energy, sound production, the band could rock or deep acid jazz on any given jam, no heroin yet, they really started to hone the psychadelic country groove sound...great tours, Europe 1972 is one of the top 3 best tours of all time...and yet we all take 1972 for granted...I sure do...i rarely listen to 1972 unless I get a wild hair or I need a bit of Veneta...08-27-1972, 09-28-1972, 05-11-1972 stand up to any other year's top three...

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Poster: Yankee9 Date: Jun 23, 2009 10:16pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

As I agreed on the overrated year post, I also agree with the 1972 "take" as well, even though this is not my personal favorite year.

Albeit, from an objective point of view, the GD were on a type of automatic pilot in this year that was on a consistently lofty level. They effortlessly played deep exploratory music mixed in with the perfect sounds of tunes that were inherently not as deep, i.e. Mexicali -- perfection on every performance; as innate as breathing. MOST IMPORTANT, the GD TOOK THEIR TIME.

I know many will disagree with my next opinion, but the next year where the GD TOOK THEIR TIME to the same degree was in '79....perhaps a rebirth of sorts with Brent.

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Poster: skuzzlebutt Date: Jun 24, 2009 9:36am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

1970, for reasons stated in my previous post. Tons of classic shows, and a little bit of everything musically.

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Poster: elkdog Date: Jun 24, 2009 5:45am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

Nothing at all wrong with '72, but I think '73 has a bit more to offer. Clearly no pigpen, but with WRS, Eyes, and HCS hitting the setlists, '73 saw the jazz influences really emerging. So, while I listen to '74 shows more than any other year, I've gotta vote for '73.

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Poster: Earl B. Powell Date: Jun 23, 2009 8:19pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

Got to agree, and my listening habits are the same, although I prefer some of the Keith and Pig stuff from Yerp. I've really found an appreciation lately for a lot of 74 and 76 shows...little sloppy with the play, not as concise or precise as 72, but a very laid back groove. Also the inclusion of the tunes from Wake add mightily to the setlists.

Another thing about 72 is that the precision is right up there with spring 77. That and Weir really picked up his craft and carried a lot of the guitar load in 72. His personal best year IMO.

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Poster: light into ashes Date: Jun 24, 2009 1:34pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Underrated/Overrated Years

This is a post from a couple years ago....

http://www.archive.org/iathreads/post-view.php?id=102338

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Poster: skuzzlebutt Date: Jun 24, 2009 2:23pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Underrated/Overrated Years

Funny to look back on that now and see how thoughts have changed...I'm giving the love to '81 in that thread, but it's been quite some time since I visited that year.

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Poster: cream-puff-war Date: Jun 24, 2009 6:31am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

...when they were at their happiest...

Their song sang throughout their lives, That's It For The The Other One, openly admits, that the main driver of the bus Furthur, "Cowboy Neal, at the wheel, of a bus to never-ever land" was their main inspiration "When it all began".

If one hears the right 1966 Grateful dead music at the right moment, even today, not overly bluesy Pig Pen, not overly primitive, but just right...
it can really do it, the magic never died...
but,
"you know, he had to die..."

that's reality...

Cassady inspired so many people he knew to love life...
that's really something that left it's mark even on a feisty codger with plenty of his own inner vision, Jerry Garcia.

And, if we had nearly as many tapes, well-recorded, as we do of the 1968, 1969, (!970 is sadly missing much too), and especially as every show practically was archived...
if we had that kind of representation for 1967...

it might be 1967 - that they were at their peak, at least in terms of full spectrum, blossoms bloomin', the cause of it all, etc. etc.

And yet, from what we DO have, 1968 is perhaps their best in-concert year - more adept than the previous year, 1967, yet more robust than the following year - 1969 - in which they reached yet another musical peak.

1970 was their creative, vocal zenith, (and as we know, much of the live shows of '70 are missing, though wthere are indisputable creative writing peaks that year as well as their vocal harmony (taught them by Crosby, Stills and Nash in part) - just never got better...

yes, each year afterward has it's merits, '71, '72, '73, how can you pick just one...

I only know for sure, from my own personal biased experience, that they never sounded better than the 1st year I saw 7 or so of their live shows - 1970.

And I wish they had - for my tastes, had they maintained the glory of what I felt that year, in 1970, I tried and tried to meet minds and all that again, year after year with the good ol Grateful Dead....

but, sorry to say, for me, it was at best fleeting moments of joy from then on... and poof, gone again...

the lost whatsit...
Janis gone, Cassady gone, and sadly, Pigpen (and even Jimi Hendrix...

it was just never the same we rule the world, it's it again.

For long stretches such as glorious '66, magical '67, super '68, sublime '69,
heavenly '70.

Ah shoot...

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Poster: Death&Mercy Date: Jun 24, 2009 6:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

1972.

1. The band was tight throughout
2. Strong vocals
3. The jams were tight and effective
4. Dark Star
5. Fine European performances from Pig

1973 is a close 2nd. If I could choose bits and pieces, I might call 1970 and 71 the "best" the band ever got, but I don't think the years hold up as well from start to finish.

1980 is a personal favorite for me, though I can't call it the best.

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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Jun 24, 2009 7:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

A friend of mine, with pretty eclectic tastes asked last week, " What GD show represents them at their peak [ he was thinking of cds to get ). I was thinking of Cornell or Veneta , or if it had to be released cds, the new Hartford 77 set .
But no show or year get all aspects of the band . 72 would get my vote also,for all the said reasons . It is the year where most of their elements are in place, and they are still energetic and tight . I do miss the flow of , say, that last disc of the above mentioned Hartford show , Sometimes we get lots of ( awesomely played ) songs with little internal architecture . They are heading that way, but it is still early . Still I think 72 gets it .

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Poster: GennyBenni Date: Jun 23, 2009 8:08pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

I can't argue with '72, although my personal feelings are for 1970.

I just listened to DP11 today at work, all the way through while I was sitting in my office writing code. That Dark Star > Cumberland Blues just blew my mind. That was 9/27, I don't know if I've ever really listened to 9/28, but I certainly will now!

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Poster: JC Edwards Date: Jun 24, 2009 4:09am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

1969!

The Peak of Primal Dead!

'nuff said.

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Poster: mcgannahan Date: Jun 24, 2009 6:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

boy, that's a tough one. have to go with 73. top notch playing the whole year through. such consistency. 72 is a close second.

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Poster: Single Malt Date: Jun 24, 2009 3:26pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: the best year for Grateful dead music is....

I vote for '73 as well. The musical maturity of the individual members was at its peak. What about those '73 bird songs- frikin awesome.